Bastard Went to Brainerd
Precarious predicaments are like being stuck in a hole that is in between sixth and seventh level of Dante’s Inferno, with the devil poking you in the ass with a broom stick tryin’ to get you unstuck. What do you do? If you go up it’s only marginally better, and if you go down it’s only marginally worse; but no matter which way you go, you still got a broomstick up your ass.
“You know me and Norma broke up?” Jeff was tellin’ me while we were ridin’ in the back of his sister’s car. The reason we were ridin’ in the backseat was because Norma was ridin’ shotgun.
“Really?” I said as I looked towards Norma who was oblivious to our conversation.
“And does she know about this?” I asked.
“Of course she does silly. She’s cool with it… We decided to remain friends,” Jeff answered back confidently.
“Well, that’s good that ya’ll can be civil about it,” I said as I checked to make sure the door wasn’t locked just in case.
“So where are we goin’?” I asked.
“Where we always go… Party Zone.”
Party Zone was a bar in Chattanooga, Tennessee that had shitty music, shitty bartenders, and shitty clientele; but it did have one thing goin’ for it… “The Beer Bash”.
The Beer Bash was basically all the draft beer you can drink for five dollars; with our limited funds, and our unquenchable thirst it was quite a deal (back then our taste buds were still underdeveloped and we were basically power drinkers; goin’ for quantity instead of quality.)
As we entered the establishment the sounds of Enuff-Z-Nuff’s “High on a Real Thing” was blarin’ thru the speakers. “Oh… I love this song.” Jeff shrieked as he started singing along with the tune (As I’ve stated many times before Jeff ain’t the most manliest of men.) I went over to the bar and laid my Lincoln on the table. “Beer Bash,” I said to the bartender. “And hurry before he starts beltin’ out a George Michaels’ song.”
When the barkeep laid the mug down I started guzzling; you pretty much had to get the first one outta the way so you couldn’t taste the second one… or the third … or the …. Well you get the idea.
Jeff and I were sitting at one side of the bar while Norma and Jeff’s sister were setting on the other side. By the third beer Jeff was startin’ to get serious’ (Which for my stories, ain’t a good thing.)
“You know Scott?… I’m glad me and Norma ain’t together no more… All we did was fight and people don’t need to do that.” He said with a committed tone in his pansy voice.
Forth beer: “You know I don’t need her… I can get any woman I want… all I hafta do is this [attempts to snap his fingers]. (He honestly tried to snap his fingers but all he did was flip his cigarette across the bar.)
Fifth beer: “Awmagawd!! Well, I guess it could be nice, if I could touch you’re body. I know not everybody has got a body like you.” He was in his lil’ disco queen zone as I was bangin’ my head on the bartop wondering two things:
1. Is there such a thing as enough beer to block this shit out?
2. Can I use my belt as a hangman’s noose?
Sixth beer: (moment of clarity) “You know I’m glad me and her can still be friends… We where like buddies anyway and I can go on and do something more constructive with my life,” Jeff said. “Well, it sounds like you’re doin’ the right thing,” I said to my friend as I stopped hitting my head and thinking that this was the first time I can recall Jeff ever usein’ common sense.
Sixth and one half beer: Jeff was on the other side of the bar standin’ in front of Norma; unbuttonin’ his shirt as he did a Hootchie-Cootchie dance in front of her. I could tell by the way Norma’s jaw was clenched that she was about to rip his balls off (if he had any) and stuff them down his throat.
All of a sudden a devil was in my ear. “Don’t do anything… the rat bastard deserves to get his ass kicked… every time ya’ll go out and sumthin’ gets fucked up it’s Jeff fault.” And then an angel was in my other ear saying “Yeah fuck Jeff… all the cocksucker ever done was cause you grief.” So I decided not to listen to either one of them and I grabbed my friend by his arm and dragged him to the bathroom.
As I was about to read him the riot act, he goes berserk. He starts screamin’ and hittin’ the side of the bathroom stall; hittin’ the wall; hittin’ the soap dispenser; hittin’ the automatic hand dryer; and then he grabbed me by the arms and yelled “Scott…I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO!”
I’m not an angry person or quick tempered but there are a coupla things one could do that would get me fightin’ mad:
1. Say that Glenn Frey was more talented than Don Henley.
2. Grab me.
“Jeff,” I said slowly and as calm as I could but inside I was about to get evil, “Get your hands off of me.” With tears in his eyes he said, “Scott you’re my friend… I would never hurt you.” With a slight chuckle I told him. “Your damn right you ain’t gonna hurt me… you gonna remove your fuckin’ hand’s right now or I will.”
Realizing what was about to happen he let go and sat on the floor sobbing. “Listen to me Jeff… You and Norma are never gonna be able to get along. Not as friends, not as lovers. Cut your loses and get over it. We’ll go to the other side of the bar and we won’t see her for the rest of the night. We’ll drink some beers and talk about strip clubs.” “You right Scott… you’re a true friend… I’m sorry.” And the bitch hugs me… in the bathroom just as a patron was walkin’ in and done a perfect u-turn back out when he saw us.
Being totally mortified, I grabbed Jeff by his arm and led him back out to the bar. As soon as his foot left the linoleum of the bathroom floor and touched carpet-firma he wrestled his arm out of my grasp and made a b-line straight to Norma and preceded to do the hootchie-cootchie part 2 the electric boogaloo.
“Fuck it!” I said and I got another beer and sat by myself already loosin’ whatever buzz I had because I could taste the beer again.
Thirty minutes or so Jeff’s sister came up to me. “Scott, I need you to do me a favor.” “Whatcha need?” I answered. “I need you to pretend to be my boyfriend … this guy I’ve been dancing with is startin’ to get too grabby.” And so with a weariness in my voice that belies my twenty-two years of life I said, “Sure … why not?” So she introduces me to her dance partner and he was a lil’ suspicious of her story.
“Why hasn’t he been dancing with ya?” He asked.
“Can’t dance… had half my foot cut off in a freak Saw Blade Frisbee accident … Oh and thank you for bringin’ up that painful memory, asshole.”
As I went on that rant I was thinking, “There is no way in hell this guy is gonna believe this four course line of shit I just put in front of him.” Romeo looked like he accidentally punched one of Jerry’s kids in the face and said “Sorry man, no harm o.k.?”
“Shit.” I thought, “Now, I’m gonna have to fake a limp for the rest of the night.”
“Thanks Scott… I owe ya one.” She said with a gleam in her eye.
“Now what in the hell was that suppose to mean.” I thought as I was tryin’ to kill that question with more alcohol.
Closing time and I got up and started gatherin’ up the lost lil’ sheep and as we had a nice four person single file line goin’, thinking every thing was goin’ to be o.k. As soon as we got out side Jeff starts pushin’ Norma and Norma bein’ the type of person that don’t take kindly to being pushed, pushed him back. We were at the car when the boilin’ point occurred. As Norma reared back to clock Jeff upside the head I was in process of grabin’ her from behind and her elbow caught me right square in the mouth, bustin my lip.
“Fuck!” I said as my head jerked back from the recoil. Then I notice something that I should’ve spotted as we were leaving but I was too focused into fakin’ a limp on my way out. Cop car about thirty feet away with two silhouettes inside. Man… I could feel them starin’ a hole in us getting ready to take all of us to the “Lock-M-Up” Hotel. When I whispered in to Norma’s ear, “Enough… there’s a Cop car over there… you need to calm down and get into the car.”
Well, that seemed to work. Norma got into the backseat on her own and some how durin’ all this ruckus Jeff is sprawled out on the pavement passed out. “Well… this solves one problem at least,” I was thinking to myself. So, Jeff’s sister and I picked Jeff’s bony ass up and put him into the passenger’s seat and pretty much figured that the night was done. All we had to do was go to our respected homes. (Sheeya… right.)
I sat in the back with Norma who was going through a very quite moment and I thought this would be a good time to try and talk to her because despite her taste in men, Norma was a friend of mine and I wanted to make sure she was in the right frame of mind.
“You’re sure your o.k.?” I asked her.
“ I’m fine.” She replied nonchalantly as she bent down into the floorboard to pick up a cigarette she dropped (or so I thought).
“Well good because when we all sober up we’ll laugh our asses off.”
No sooner than I got that sentence out of my mouth before I realized what she did. As she was feelin’ around in the floorboard for her cigs; she was actually searchin’ for the seat release to the front passenger side seat. A click rang out in the car like a gun shot. Before I knew what was goin’ on Norma brings her knee to her chin and started kickin’ the shit out of the back of the seat that Jeff was in screaming, “Tell me mother fucker, tell me!” Bang, Bang, Plok went Jeff’s head (the bang bang was from the dashboard, the plok was from the windshield.). “Tell me you fuckin’ asshole!” she screamed again as Jeff’s head bounced different parts of the car.
“Norma… calm the fuck down!” I yelled tryin’ to wrap my legs and arms around her so she wouldn’t kick Jeff any more but it looked more like a Karma Sutra position. I looked to the front to see if Jeff was all right. He wasn’t bleedin’ but the moonlight was glistening off the drool that was dripping from his mouth oblivious to what was happening to his noggin. “Great,.” I thought “With that many blows to the head he’s gonna be brain damaged … er more so.
We get to Norma’s house first and Norma gets out and opens the front passenger side door and grabs Jeff like those cavemen did in those old cartoons just after they hit the pretty young cave woman up side the head with a club and throws him over one shoulder a starts carryin’ him into her house.
“Norma,” I said with a lil’ quiver in my voice. “I don’t think this is a good idea.” She paused and turned around and with a look that would scare the shit out of Satan himself, she said, “Don’t worry… he’ll be all right.”
To quote Pontius Pilate “Fuck it… I wash my hands of this shit.“ (Well maybe not a quote more like a paraphrase I suppose, but anyway…) I went back to the car and told Jeff’s sister that she might have to get use to the idea that her lil’ brother was no more. (She seemed pretty cool about it, come to think of it.)
All was quite as we headed down hiway 41 on our way to my house and Jeff’s sister said “You tried your best.” “Thanks… I appreciate that, no offense but I hope she ties his ass to the bed and tortures him for a couple of days at least.” I said as I could feel the horns poppin’ out of my head.
“You seem more mature than Jeff’s other friends; he’s lucky to have a friend like you,” She said with that same gleam in her eye that she had earlier. “Huh… thanks.” I answered back with my hand on the door knob just in case I had to jump and roll out if this got any deeper. But fortunately we made it back to my apartment and we said goodnight and I went up and crashed on the bed.
The next day:
Jeff: Hey man… what’s goin’ on?
Me: Jeff?… You’re alive?
Jeff: Yeah, I’m alive. I just wanted to call and see if you wanted to go back to the Party Zone tonight with us?
Me: Us?… Who’s us?
Jeff : Well, me, Norma, and my sister.